During the 1st century AD, Poetovio, now known as Ptuj, was the largest Roman settlement in the area that is now Slovenia. Much later, in the 13th century, Maribor was founded. Originally given the German name Marchburg, the city took its Slavic name in 1836. For centuries the two towns competed for economic and cultural prominence within the region, and Maribor finally gained the upper hand in 1846, when a new railway line connected the city to Vienna and Trieste. The area between Maribor and Ptuj is a flat, fertile floodplain formed by the Drava River. South of Ptuj lie the hills of Haloze, famous for quality white wines.
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